By Sue Wilkes
Immerse your self within the vanished international inhabited via Austen's contemporaries. full of element, and anecdotes, this is often an intimate exploration of ways the center and higher periods lived from 1775, the 12 months of Austen's beginning, to the coronation of George IV
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Was the government’s propaganda always a reaction to or an imitation of its opponents? Did the government of Charles II shape its policies to suit public opinion? Was the public awareness of politics and events sophisticated enough to hold politicians accountable for their actions and propaganda? The answers to these questions are necessary for understanding the importance of ideology to Restoration politics. Some of these questions are addressed in Part I, but as a preliminary response let us emphasize that, in the aftermath of the Civil Wars, the nation was nearly unanimous in its desire for stability and order.
Even in the king’s absence, the Chancellor or Keeper directed the business of the House, stated royal policy in the important opening speeches, and guided debates through his role as Speaker. With the exception of 1667–73, this important position was held by two of Charles’s most effective servants—Clarendon and Sir Heneage (Lord) Finch. 93 The limited numbers of peers attending most debates, the reliable bloc of episcopal votes, the natural conservatism of a body abolished during the late troubles, and the king’s influence and presence in the House provided the government with ample opportunity to create a solid majority in the Lords.
Both Charles I and Cromwell had acted arbitrarily, and their methods of rule—Personal and military—had been rejected in turn. These early examples of political accountability indicate that the nation would expect Charles II to pursue policies which respected his subject’s liberties, the laws of England, and the Protestant religion. Thus any attempt to exploit public opinion or to gain support for an ideology would hinge on the government’s credibility. In other words, the concern for public opinion not only transformed English political culture, but also meant that the government would now be held accountable for its ideology.